Thanks for your interest! For context, read more about my research or browse publications by topic.

Openness is crucial for cumulative science. PDFs on this page are made available under the Taverne amendment to Dutch copyright law, which allows researchers based in The Netherlands to openly share their publicly funded work.

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TL;DR: Brain-to-brain interfaces promise to bypass language. Here I argue that if we want truly humane brain-to-brain interfaces, we find something like language slipping in through the back door. It wouldn’t be the first time language reinvents itself, and it won’t be the last.

Nielsen, A. K. S., & Dingemanse, M. (2020). Iconicity in Word Learning and Beyond: A Critical Review: Language and Speech. doi:10.1177/0023830920914339 PDF

TL;DR: We critically review work on the role of iconicity in word learning; introduce a distinction between local and general learning enhancement; observe that most evidence points to the former even if most interpretations assume the latter; and recommend crosslinguistic experiments and new directions to help the field keep its momentum.

Dingemanse, M. (2020). Between Sound and Speech: Liminal Signs in Interaction. Research on Language and Social Interaction, 53(1), 188–196. doi:10.1080/08351813.2020.1712967 PDF

TL;DR: You can learn a lot about language by looking at what’s not considered language. In an area usually negatively defined as ‘nonlexical’ I introduce the notion of liminal signs: signs that derive interactional utility from being borderline linguistic. Liminal signs are surprisingly important to the smooth running of the interactional machinery.

See also a selection of key papers and niche papers.

Verhoef, T., Roberts, S. G., & Dingemanse, M. (2015). Emergence of systematic iconicity: transmission, interaction and analogy. In D. Noelle, R. Dale, A. S. Warlaumont, J. Yoshimi, T. Matlock, C. D. Jennings, & P. P. Maglio (Eds.), Proceedings of the 37th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 2481–2486). Cognitive Science Society. PDF
van Leeuwen, T. M., Dingemanse, M., Todil, B., Agameya, A., & Majid, A. (2016). Non-Random Associations of Graphemes with Colors in Arabic. Multisensory Research, 29(1–3), 223–252. doi:10.1163/22134808-00002511 PDF
van Leeuwen, T. M., van Petersen, E., Burghoorn, F., Dingemanse, M., & van Lier, R. (2019). Autistic traits in synaesthesia: atypical sensory sensitivity and enhanced perception of details. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 374(1787), 20190024. doi:10.1098/rstb.2019.0024 PDF
van Leeuwen, T. M., & Dingemanse, M. (2016). Colour associations in synaesthetes and nonsynaesthetes: A large-scale study in Dutch. Perception, 45, 333–334.
San Roque, L., Kendrick, K., Norcliffe, E., Brown, P., Defina, R., Dingemanse, M., Dirksmeyer, T., Enfield, N. J., Floyd, S., Hammond, J., Rossi, G., Tufvesson, S., van Putten, S., & Majid, A. (2015). Vision verbs dominate in conversation across cultures, but the ranking of non-visual verbs varies. Cognitive Linguistics. doi:10.1515/cog-2014-0089 PDF
Rasenberg, M., Özyürek, A., & Dingemanse, M. (2020). Alignment in Multimodal Interaction: An Integrative Framework. Cognitive Science, 44(11). doi:10.1111/cogs.12911 PDF
Nielsen, A. K. S., & Dingemanse, M. (2020). Iconicity in Word Learning and Beyond: A Critical Review: Language and Speech. doi:10.1177/0023830920914339 PDF
Majid, A., Roberts, S. G., Cilissen, L., Emmorey, K., Nicodemus, B., O’Grady, L., Woll, B., LeLan, B., de Sousa, H., Cansler, B. L., Shayan, S., de Vos, C., Senft, G., Enfield, N. J., Razak, R. A., Fedden, S., Tufvesson, S., Dingemanse, M., Ozturk, O., … Levinson, S. C. (2018). Differential coding of perception in the world’s languages. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115(45), 11369–11376. doi:10.1073/pnas.1720419115 PDF
Lockwood, G., Hagoort, P., & Dingemanse, M. (2016). Synthesized size-sound sound symbolism. In A. Papafragou, D. Grodner, D. Mirman, & J. C. Trueswell (Eds.), Proceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 1823–1828). Cognitive Science Society. PDF
Lockwood, G., Hagoort, P., & Dingemanse, M. (2016). How iconicity helps people learn new words: neural correlates and individual differences in sound-symbolic bootstrapping. Collabra, 2(1), 1–15. doi:10.1525/collabra.42 PDF
Lockwood, G., Dingemanse, M., & Hagoort, P. (2016). Sound-symbolism boosts novel word learning. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 42(8), 1274–1281. doi:10.1037/xlm0000235 PDF
Lockwood, G., & Dingemanse, M. (2015). Iconicity in the lab: a review of behavioural, developmental, and neuroimaging research into sound-symbolism. Frontiers in Psychology, 6(1246), 1–14. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01246 PDF
Kendrick, K. H., Brown, P., Dingemanse, M., Floyd, S., Gipper, S., Hayano, K., Hoey, E., Hoymann, G., Manrique, E., Rossi, G., & Levinson, S. C. (2020). Sequence organization: A universal infrastructure for social action. Journal of Pragmatics, 168, 119–138. doi:10.1016/j.pragma.2020.06.009 PDF
Fusaroli, R., Tylén, K., Garly, K., Steensig, J., Christiansen, M. H., & Dingemanse, M. (2017). Measures and mechanisms of common ground: backchannels, conversational repair, and interactive alignment in free and task-oriented social interactions. In G. Gunzelmann, A. Howes, T. Tenbrink, & E. Davelaar (Eds.), Proceedings of the 39th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 2055–2060). PDF
Floyd, S., Rossi, G., Baranova, J., Blythe, J., Dingemanse, M., Kendrick, K. H., Zinken, J., & Enfield, N. J. (2018). Universals and cultural diversity in the expression of gratitude. Royal Society Open Science, 5(5), 180391. doi:10.1098/rsos.180391 PDF
Enfield, N. J., Dingemanse, M., Baranova, J., Blythe, J., Brown, P., Dirksmeyer, T., Drew, P., Floyd, S., Gipper, S., Gísladóttir, R., Hoymann, G., Kendrick, K. H., Levinson, S. C., Magyari, L., Manrique, E., Rossi, G., San Roque, L., & Torreira, F. (2013). Huh? What? – A first survey in twenty-one languages. In M. Hayashi, G. Raymond, & J. Sidnell (Eds.), Conversational Repair and Human Understanding (pp. 343–380). Cambridge University Press. PDF
Drijvers, L., Zaadnoordijk, L., & Dingemanse, M. (2015). Sound-symbolism is disrupted in dyslexia: Implications for the role of cross-modal abstraction processes. In D. Noelle, R. Dale, A. S. Warlaumont, J. Yoshimi, T. Matlock, C. D. Jennings, & P. P. Maglio (Eds.), Proceedings of the 37th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 602–607). Cognitive Science Society. PDF
Dingemanse, M., Torreira, F., & Enfield, N. J. (2013). Is “Huh?” a universal word? Conversational infrastructure and the convergent evolution of linguistic items. PLOS ONE, 8(11), e78273. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0078273 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Rossi, G., & Floyd, S. (2017). Place reference in story beginnings: a cross-linguistic study of narrative and interactional affordances. Language in Society, 46(2), 129–158. doi:10.1017/S0047404516001019 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Roberts, S. G., Baranova, J., Blythe, J., Drew, P., Floyd, S., Gisladottir, R. S., Kendrick, K. H., Levinson, S. C., Manrique, E., Rossi, G., & Enfield, N. J. (2015). Universal Principles in the Repair of Communication Problems. PLOS ONE, 10(9), e0136100. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0136100 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Kendrick, K. H., & Enfield, N. J. (2016). A coding scheme for other-initiated repair across languages. Open Linguistics, 2, 35–46. doi:10.1515/opli-2016-0002 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Blythe, J., & Dirksmeyer, T. (2018). Formats for other-initiation of repair across languages: an exercise in pragmatic typology. In I. A. Nikolaeva (Ed.), Linguistic Typology: Critical Concepts in Linguistics (Vol. 4, pp. 322–357). Routledge. PDF
Dingemanse, M., Blythe, J., & Dirksmeyer, T. (2014). Formats for other-initiation of repair across languages: An exercise in pragmatic typology. Studies in Language, 38(1), 5–43. doi:10.1075/sl.38.1.01din PDF
Dingemanse, M., Blasi, D. E., Lupyan, G., Christiansen, M. H., & Monaghan, P. (2015). Arbitrariness, iconicity and systematicity in language. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 19(10), 603–615. doi:10.1016/j.tics.2015.07.013 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Hammond, J., Stehouwer, H., Somasundaram, A., & Drude, S. (2012). A high speed transcription interface for annotating primary linguistic data. Proceedings of the 6th Workshop on Language Technology for Cultural Heritage, Social Sciences, and Humanities, 7–12. PDF
Dingemanse, M., Perlman, M., & Perniss, P. (2020). Construals of iconicity: experimental approaches to form–meaning resemblances in language. Language and Cognition, 12(1), 1–14. doi:10.1017/langcog.2019.48 PDF
Dingemanse, M., Verhoef, T., & Roberts, S. G. (2014). The role of iconicity in the cultural evolution of communicative signals. In B. de Boer & T. Verhoef (Eds.), Proceedings of Evolang X Workshop on Signals, Speech and Signs (pp. 11–15). PDF
Dingemanse, M., Schuerman, W., Reinisch, E., Tufvesson, S., & Mitterer, H. (2016). What sound symbolism can and cannot do: testing the iconicity of ideophones from five languages. Language, 92(2), e117–e133. doi:10.1353/lan.2016.0034 PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Thompson, B. (2020). Playful iconicity: structural markedness underlies the relation between funniness and iconicity. Language and Cognition, 12(1), 203–224. doi:10.1017/langcog.2019.49 PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Majid, A. (2012). The semantic structure of sensory vocabulary in an African language. In N. Miyake, D. Peebles, & R. P. Cooper (Eds.), Proceedings of the 34th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 300–305). Cognitive Science Society. PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Floyd, S. (2014). Conversation across cultures. In N. J. Enfield, P. Kockelman, & J. Sidnell (Eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Linguistic Anthropology (pp. 434–464). Cambridge University Press. PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Enfield, N. J. (2014). Let’s Talk: Universal Social Rules Underlie Languages. Scientific American Mind, 25, 64–69. doi:10.1038/scientificamericanmind0914-64 PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Enfield, N. J. (2015). Other-initiated repair across languages: towards a typology of conversational structures. Open Linguistics, 1, 98–118. doi:10.2478/opli-2014-0007 PDF
Dingemanse, M., & Akita, K. (2017). An inverse relation between expressiveness and grammatical integration: on the morphosyntactic typology of ideophones, with special reference to Japanese. Journal of Linguistics, 53(3), 501–532. doi:10.1017/S002222671600030X PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2020). Recruiting assistance and collaboration: a West-African corpus study. In S. Floyd, G. Rossi, & N. J. Enfield (Eds.), Getting others to do things: A pragmatic typology of recruitments (pp. 369–421). Language Science Press. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (in press). The language of perception in Siwu. In A. Majid & S. C. Levinson (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of the Language of Perception. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2019). “Ideophone” as a comparative concept. In K. Akita & P. Pardeshi (Eds.), Ideophones, Mimetics, Expressives (pp. 13–33). John Benjamins. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2018). Redrawing the margins of language: Lessons from research on ideophones. Glossa: A Journal of General Linguistics, 3(1), 1–30. doi:10.5334/gjgl.444 PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2017). Expressiveness and system integration. On the typology of ideophones, with special reference to Siwu. STUF - Language Typology and Universals, 70(2), 363–384. doi:10.1515/stuf-2017-0018 PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2017). Brain-to-brain interfaces and the role of language in distributing agency. In N. J. Enfield & P. Kockelman (Eds.), Distributed Agency (pp. 59–66). Oxford University Press. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2015). Other-initiated repair in Siwu. Open Linguistics, 1, 232–255. doi:10.1515/opli-2015-0001 PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2015). Ideophones and reduplication: Depiction, description, and the interpretation of repeated talk in discourse. Studies in Language, 39(4), 946–970. doi:10.1075/sl.39.4.05din PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2015). Folk definitions in linguistic fieldwork. In J. Essegbey, B. Henderson, & F. McLaughlin (Eds.), Language Documentation and Endangerment in Africa (pp. 215–238). John Benjamins. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2014). Making new ideophones in Siwu: creative depiction in conversation. Pragmatics and Society, 5(3), 384–405. doi:10.1075/ps.5.3.04din PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2013). Ideophones and gesture in everyday speech. Gesture, 13(2), 143–165. doi:10.1075/gest.13.2.02din PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2012). Advances in the cross-linguistic study of ideophones. Language and Linguistics Compass, 6(10), 654–672. doi:10.1002/lnc3.361 PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2011). Ezra Pound among the Mawu: Ideophones and Iconicity in Siwu. In P. Michelucci, O. Fischer, & C. Ljungberg (Eds.), Semblance and Signification (pp. 39–54). John Benjamins. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2009). The selective advantage of body-part terms. Journal of Pragmatics, 41, 2130–2136. doi:10.1016/j.pragma.2008.11.008 PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2009). The Enduring Spoken Word. Science, 323(5917), 1010b–11011. doi:10.1126/science.323.5917.1010b PDF


Mostly for historical reasons I preserve a few reports and essays that have attracted some citations and secondary uses over the years.

Dingemanse, M. (2006). The semantics of Bantu noun classification: a review and comparison of three approaches [MA Essay]. Leiden University. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2006). The Body in Yoruba: a linguistic study [MA Thesis]. Leiden University. PDF
Dingemanse, M. (2005). A Sketch of Nobiin tone. PDF